FT LAUDERDALE (CBSMiami) – Shackled and cuffed Paul Brandreth, who goes by the name “Paulie”, walked into a Ft. Lauderdale courtroom Monday to testify in the trial of Anthony “Little Tony” Ferrari.
Ferrari, along with Anthony “Big Tony” Moscatiello, are accused of organizing he 2001 mob style hit of businessman Konstantinos “Gus” Boulis.
Last week, Broward Circuit Judge Ilona Holmes declared a mistrial for Moscatiello. His attorney, David Bogenshutz, is battling a lingering illness and couldn’t continue with the trial.
Prosecutors say they will retry Moscatiello at a later date.
On the stand, Brandreth testified that Ferrari tried to hire him to carry out a hit.
“He said ‘Somebody’s got to disappear’,” Brandeth told the jury. “I says ‘What for?’ He says ‘Somebody was in the wrong place, at the wrong time and they’re running their mouth and they need to go.'”
Brandeth said he was hired to kill Ferrari’s girlfriend, his bodyguard Dwayne Nicholson and Ferrari’s go-fer James “Pudgy” Fiorillo. All of them knew about the murder of Miami Subs found Boulis.
“He said ‘Ten grand’ then he said, excuse my language, ‘F*** it! All three for 30’.”
The first target, according to Brandeth, was Fiorillo who was reportedly hiding out in a New York hotel.
“I was going there and I was like his knight in shining armor,” Paulie said. “But I was really coming up to kill him,” said Brandeth. “The way I planned it was, I’d have a car, I’d get him out of the hotel, just go somewhere, I would have whacked him and dump the body.”
But Brandeth said the plan fell apart as when he arrived in New York and Moscatiello picked him up. He described the two “Tonys” as disorganized buffoons and said they didn’t even had a gun for him to use.
“He thought I was going to give him some like poisonous coke or something and I said ‘What do I look like to you, a F*****g chemist? I don’t know anything about that.”
Brandeth said not only did he not have a weapon, no one paid him.
“I said ‘What, am i supposed to choke the guy in his sleep? Put him on my F*****g shoulder and carry him somewhere?’ I’m like, ‘you guys ain’t prepared.”
Brandeth said he came back to South Florida to re-group. He planned on driving up and using his own gun, but Ferrari changed him again.
“(Ferrari) Tony gave me like 50 or 60 dollars and I was like ‘You know what I mean, this isn’t even going to get me through Georgia with this money. You know what I mean?”
“Why didn’t you kill him,” asked the prosecutor.
“I didn’t have a gun. They didn’t pay me. I didn’t have a car. It was a mess, it was a nightmare,” said Brandeth.
Boulis was in the middle of a messy power struggle to regain control of the SunCruz Casino fleet which he had sold a few months earlier to New York businessman Adam Kidan and former Washington lobbyist Jack Abramoff. Both were later convicted of fraud in that $147.5 million transaction.
Last week Kidan testified that he was having problems with Boulis and reached out to Moscatiello, who in turn brought in Ferrari, for security and protection.
Moscatiello, reputedly tied to New York’s Gambino crime family, gave the orders that led to Boulis’ killing to ensure he’d continue receiving thousands of dollars as a SunCruz consultant.